MRT 2014 progress report: Outline of upcoming changes

The Land Transport Authority Thursday released an update on Singapore's MRT network, summarising the progress made in 2014 and outlining upcoming changes to the rail network. -- PHOTO: ST FILE
The Land Transport Authority Thursday released an update on Singapore's MRT network, summarising the progress made in 2014 and outlining upcoming changes to the rail network. -- PHOTO: ST FILE

The Land Transport Authority Thursday released an update on Singapore's MRT network.

It summarises the progress made in 2014 and outlines upcoming changes to the rail network.

Here are the highlights of the report.

1.  More trains being added to existing lines 

More trains will be added to existing lines every year from 2015 to 2019. The first of the 18 new North East Line (NEL) and 24 new Circle Line (CCL) trains have arrived and will be progressively put into service from the middle of 2015. From 2016 to 2019, 57 new trains will be progressively added to the North-South and East-West Lines (NSEWL), boosting rail network capacity by about 40 per cent.

From November this year, 13 additional train-cars will be progressively put into service for the Bukit Panjang LRT (BPLRT) system, increasing the fleet size by about 70 per cent. From 2016, 16 new train-cars will arrive for the Sengkang-Punggol LRT (SKPGLRT), increasing the fleet size by about 40 per cent.

2. Facelift for Clementi, Commonwealth and Queenstown MRT stations

These three stations will get new station entrances, equipped with fare gates and ticketing machines. Each station will have an additional pedestrian link bridge to improve accessibility.

Work at the three stations is expected to complete by mid-2015.

3. Additional platform for Tanah Merah station

The additional platform will allow trains heading to and from Changi Airport to arrive and depart the station at shorter intervals. This will reduce waiting times for commuters heading to Expo and Changi Airport stations. Work is expected to be completed by 2024. 

4. Free WiFi access at more MRT stations

By end-2015, commuters waiting for trains at the platforms of 32 stations will be able to access free WiFi service to check their e-mails, surf the web, or connect to social media platforms. The stations include all on the NEL, and 12 stations in Ang Mo Kio, Bedok, Bukit Batok, Buona Vista, Choa Chu Kang, Clementi, Eunos, Jurong East, Khatib, Paya Lebar, Sembawang and Yishun.

5. Noise barriers to be installed at more locations

The first phase of the noise barrier installation works at Admiralty, Marsiling, and Sembawang stations has begun and is on schedule for completion by 2016. LTA is evaluating tender proposals to appoint a contractor for the next set of installation works at nine other locations in Bedok and Eunos in the east; and Clementi and Jurong in the west. 

6. Shorter waiting times for commuters and greater rail network capacity

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Work to replace timber sleepers with concrete sleepers on the North-South Line and East-West Line is on track for completion by mid-2015 and end-2016 respectively. New concrete sleepers, which last twice as long as the old wooden sleepers, will allow trains to pick up speed.

The signalling system for the North-South Line and East-West Line is being upgraded to allow trains to run at shorter intervals of 100 seconds, compared to the shortest possible intervals of 120 seconds under the old signalling system.

7. On-going expansion of rail network

The Downtown Line (DTL) and Thomson-East Coast Line (TEL) are under construction. LTA is adding four more stations on the East-West Line and one more station on the North-South Line. Phase 2 of  DTL is on schedule to open by first quarter of 2016. The 16 stations in Phrase 3 of the DTL are on track to open by 2017. The 31 stations on the TEL will be completed in stages from 2019 to 2024. 

Source: Land Transport Authority